Since none of my real life friends know that this blog exists, I think I will be able to coherently express the jumble of thoughts and my true feelings that has been bothering me for the past two weeks. Sigh.
I know it’s been two years since I last posted, but life just got in the way coupled with neglect, laziness and a severe lack in motivation to post every day.
So this story begins three years ago. I had just been dumped by my then long-term girlfriend when I was eighteen or nineteen. I won’t go into too much detail but it was a bad break and I was in a bad place both health-wise and in my studies. It was a complete mess and I was just lost in direction. I didn’t know what to do so I considered suicide by taking a whole cocktail of medication. That was also one of the rare times in my short life thus far, when I discovered that emotional pain was so much more worse than physical pain.
For a while, I struggled to contain my feelings; and coupled with the fact that I had no one to express my feelings to… I cracked. After bawling my eyes out like a little bitch in my bathroom, until not a single more tear could be shed – I felt a wave of calm wash over me.
So I pulled myself together and got on with life; found a new part-time job, and began working again to take my mind off my thoughts. It was a good distraction and eventually, time began to numb my feelings and I just stopped caring about things as a means of self-protection. I didn’t want the pain of feeling what I felt.
Anyway, some eight weeks after my breakup, I met a girl. Let’s call her A.W. She reminded me so much of my ex-girlfriend in the way she acted – or maybe I was just being delusional and wasn’t thinking properly.
I think we became quite close in our first year of friendship, but it was slightly weird for me personally. She was four years younger than me, and I didn’t want to entertain of a relationship for numerous reasons. I was 20 and her then-temporary English tutor, and she was 16.
I don’t know why I’m still typing at this point because it feels like a waste of time but I’ll continue.
She was my first bright spot in that dark period of my life. I would have asked her out then but she was so young and still completing her high school. It just seemed naturally wrong on moral levels too, and I had to wrestle with my feelings at the time. So I did what I thought was the right decision: I did not reciprocate her feelings because we knew each other in a professional setting as well as the issue of our age gap.
I had a funny feeling she liked me: we got along quite well, and it felt quite natural on the couple of dates we went on. But I just couldn’t ask her out at that point – she was just too young.
Eventually, our friendship grew over the past three years, albeit one year when we didn’t really communicate much, so I guess we drifted apart during that year. During that year, I had to focus on my own life; although it’s selfish, it was important for me to make something out of myself during my final year.
You could even say I was able to forget about her for a while. Feelings of stability, reconnecting with friends, and eventually knowing myself as a person over these three years has brought me clarity in the way I see things (or at least I hope I do). I still do stupid shit sometimes, but eh, it is the way it is. Everyone makes mistakes. But I have most definitely can see that I am myself now: that I can be who I am without feeling ashamed around anyone.
Anyway, A. W. and I still hung out but in a group of close friends. Even then, it felt so natural to be with her, and it felt like we were dating. However, during that time, she found a boyfriend. Honestly, I was disappointed at myself, ashamed that I didn’t do anything, and I kept my distance as an automatic reaction.
Why did I not act on my feelings then? Because I just got out of a long-term relationship and did not want to rush into another one. That would have been disrespectful to A. W.
So having that rationale, I was able to make some sort of peace with my feelings then. But I think it was since then, when I drifted from her. I felt unnecessary, and unneeded. Why would she still need me if she found someone else?
In the back of my head, I knew as a friend, I should still support her. But the immature side of me didn’t want to recognize that, which was selfish. I did not want to be the only person supporting her – that’s retarded. So I just congratulated her and asked about they met etc.
Fast-forward a year, to this time. More than a month ago, we started talking again. It was just short daily snaps of our lives, and without realizing it, we were talking again. The distance is still there I guess, maybe I should find out more. There’s just so much to say but I really cannot go through every minute detail.
Regardless, we began to have feelings for each other again in the past two weeks that we’ve been hanging out. The reason why I am so conflicted is that I do not know what to do.
She has a boyfriend, both we both know how we feel towards each other. She wants to remain loyal, and says she still likes him enough to stay with him. I won’t go into too much detail, but it really doesn’t seem like he cares about her (he probably shows it in a different way that I’m not aware of though). I will give her 100% of my effort to support her in any way possible, whilst both of us chase our personal goals. A two-way support network that is not dependent on one another.
However, after having a couple of talks, A. W. decided she shouldn’t get too attached and wished for some space, which I thought I gave her. What I didn’t realize is that our expectations of space are totally different.
She was an extreme(?) introvert, whilst I was more of an average person (I like my own time, but I also like spending time with my close friends). The way I do and say things was just different from what she was use to. Therefore, I have disrespected her because I told her how I felt, and because I didn’t give her the space she wanted (which she believes).
Totally different expectations of what is and what should be.
I am a selfish person. I freely admit it. Feelings are whimsical and may change with time. I don’t even know what love is. But I do have a pretty good idea about it.
The warm feelings that start from one’s belly, and rises up to your face that just makes you smile unintentionally when you’re with that person. That feeling of being lost in wonder and awe when I hear her sing. Is it just superficial fascination with someone who is better than you in every way? Or is it the feeling of falling in love? The answer still eludes me, but I err towards the latter. It’s the feeling when you want to stare at them, with a dumb grin plastered over your face when they’re with you.
A. W. told me to move on; but how can I? Must I? Why should I?
Various answers rise so quickly before I can even blink twice.
- You are not good enough. What happened to your confidence?
- You have nothing to offer. So is a relationship a trade of services?
- No career, no redeeming talents? Move on.
I have always said that people should be calm and rational to make the best decisions, but I have underestimated what it would feel like when you are placed in the same position. So many emotions run and re-run through my mind that I don’t even know what the right thing is to do.
However, I absolutely refuse to move on, despite the pain this will cause me. The pain of regret and missed opportunity. The pain of still seeing her despite knowing how I feel, and realizing that this is not what she needs right now.
It sucks. It sucks so much that I want to cry. I have tried my best to rationalize everything – I know what I should do, but it still sucks. Feelings suck.
I don’t want to ruin our friendship, but already I feel like I have. The pain that I’m suffering from is that I do not want to lose her. I want to at least give it a shot. But she’s choosing not to, which I understand.
We did talk about whether we’ve missed our opportunity, to which I expressed that we might have one in the future. I don’t remember a clear cut answer from her but oh well. Here’s to hoping.
I don’t know if I’m dealing with this properly. I use a lot of humour to try get through my days, and I put on a smile and laugh around my friends so nothing ever appears wrong. This coupled along with the other things going on in my life – I’m not even sure if I’m depressed or have depression. The irony is that I work for Lifeline, a suicide prevention hotline. Sometimes I don’t want to think or feel because I know for a fact that ruminating in my own thoughts will just lead to more toxic thoughts that doesn’t help me or anyone.
Sigh. A big part of me wants to hold on to that hope that I can get a shot of us starting a relationship and see how it goes. But at the same time, she wants me to move on, despite our mutual feelings – and I question if that’s what she truly wants.
I have to admit though, on a personal reflection note, I’m 95% better at controlling my emotions. Talking about it always helps, and getting on with my life helps with the distractions. But the reminders I get every day from seeing her, talking to her, or just my friends talking about her, feels like my chest is being stabbed repeatedly with a dagger.
And I suppose that A. W. ignoring me is her way of trying to not get too attached. That hurts.
I just had to vent about this somewhere. I’ll probably post a daily reflection of how my state of being so I can put my thoughts in a place and organize it. I don’t know if anyone else has had a similar experience, but I’m so glad that I have my bros and squad to support me. We’ve been there for each other in our darkest times, and I know I will gladly give my life for my bros.
TLDR: I’m not giving up on her, even if this goes against the very nature of my being of trying to be rational. Even if she tells me to move on, not giving up is the right thing to do. That is my belief. How can I give up if I haven’t even tried? Is this the limit of being realistic? I have long accepted the reality of many situations after reading Marcus Aurelius’ letters that became the foundation of Stoicism. To be stoic, is to know that everything will be okay in the end – that humans endure are more tougher than one can ever imagine.
I still question my resolve, because I am willing enough to entertain the possibilities of worst-case scenarios. Is it still worth the risk? Perhaps years of missed opportunities just to wait for something that might happen with A. W?
But if I have already factored that in, and still believe that I should not give up on these feelings of mine, then perhaps I should endure.
Doubt plagues my mind like a hazy toxin that blinds the eyes and rots the brain. The odds are stacked against me due to her conviction of loyalty, so should I bid to remain steadfast in my foolish hope?
“Love should be put into action!” screamed the old hermit from Chemin de Fer. But how can it be put into action when I don’t even know what love is.
I still don’t.
Against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand. – Mark Twain.